French

Program Overview

Majoring in a foreign language such as French allows students to pursue careers in business, management, law, government, teaching, translation, publishing, communications, and travel. 

French students at Rider acquire an international perspective and a unique intercultural sensitivity. Advanced foreign language skills combined with intercultural expertise increase the employment prospects of our students in the global market place of the 21st century.

A major or minor in French offers students the opportunity to receive a practical grounding in the French language and culture through a challenging curriculum which may include study abroad. In addition, our language, literature, film and culture courses prepare students to understand cultural diversity abroad and at home, to appreciate their own language and culture, and to gain global awareness. An individual fluent in another language acquires insight into the world in which we live. Advanced foreign language skills, combined with an international perspective and intercultural expertise, position our students for productive careers in the global and multicultural marketplaces of the 21st century. Faculty engagement in research and teaching excellence combines with our unique "accent on the individual" through advisement and co-curricular opportunities to create a challenging yet supportive atmosphere in which students can realize their potential.

A major or minor in French will also complement many degree programs in business, education, music and the liberal arts.

Students have access to a state-of-the-art Foreign Language Media Center with 25 computer work stations with Internet access for self-paced work and classroom instruction including interactive audio, video and text-based materials. 

Curriculum Overview

Classes in the French major include introduction to French literature, French composition and translation, French for Business and the professions, French culture and French phonetics and conversation. Students also study literature and culture and liberal arts. Students are strongly encouraged to spend one semester abroad.

French students may also minor in German, Spanish, Italian and Chinese.

Honors Programs in Languages, Literatures and Cultures

The department faculty will identify prospective honors students at the earliest possible moment and offer them challenges and encouragement to develop to their highest potential. A student who has a 3.25 cumulative average and a 3.5 in the major may be invited by the department, upon recommendation of a faculty member, to become a candidate for the 3-credit honors thesis or capstone project. Details of the thesis or capstone project will be arranged to accommodate the interests of the individual student. 

The thesis/capstone project is completed during the senior year. It represents the culmination of a student’s academic experience, and is an irreplaceable learning experience for the development of research, writing and critical thinking skills for graduate school admissions and success, as well as work in numerous careers. Students who successfully complete the thesis or capstone project and retain the required cumulative and major grade point average will graduate with honors.

Degree Offered

  • B.A. in French

Contact

Daria Cohen, Ph.D.
Associate Professor and Chairperson 
Fine Arts 383
609-895-5556 
dcohen@rider.edu

Program Website: French
Associated Department: Department of Languages, Literatures and Cultures

Related Programs

French Major Requirements

(24 credits beyond French IV and 12 credits in collateral liberal arts courses)

Core Requirements
See LAS Core Page
FRE 305An Intro to French Literature3
Select seven of the following:21
French Composition/Translation
French for Business
French Culture
French Phonetics and Conversation
Cultural Expression in French Film and Television
Portrait of the Hero in French Fiction
Mask & Reality in French Theat
Self in French Prose & Poetry
A Quest for Identity: Francophone Lit
Independent Research and Study
Special Studies
Liberal Arts
Select one option:12
Option I
Select two of the following:
Masterworks of Western Lit I
Masterworks of Western Lit II
Two additional courses in another foreign language.
Option II
Masterworks of Western Lit I
Masterworks of Western Lit II
Three additional courses in another foreign language.
Total Credits36

Some of the requirements may be met by Study Abroad. Students are strongly encouraged to spend at least one semester abroad. All majors must take at least one French course per semester in the senior year.

French Minor Requirements

(18 credits)

FRE 200
FRE 201
French III
and French IV 1
6
FRE 305An Intro to French Literature3
Three French courses at the 300-level or above.9
French Composition/Translation
French for Business
French Culture
French Phonetics and Conversation
Cultural Expression in French Film and Television
Portrait of the Hero in French Fiction
Mask & Reality in French Theat
Self in French Prose & Poetry
A Quest for Identity: Francophone Lit
Independent Research and Study
Internshp in Foreign Languages
Special Studies
Total Credits18
1

Two advanced (300- or 400-level) courses will be substituted upon demonstrated proficiency.

Some of the requirements for the minor may be met by Study Abroad by agreement with the department. Students must enroll in at least one upper-level course upon completion of a Study Abroad program.

The following educational plan is provided as a sample only.  Rider students who do not declare a major during their freshman year; who change their major; or those who transfer to Rider may follow a different plan to ensure a timely graduation.  Each student, with guidance from his or her academic advisor, will develop a personalized educational plan.

Plan of Study Grid
Year 1
Fall SemesterSemester Credit Hours
FRE 200 French III 3
CMP 120 Expository Writing 1 3
Socal Science Core (1 of 2) 3
MTH 102 Finite Mathematics 1 3
HIS 150 World History to 1500 3
NCT 010 Freshman Seminar 0
 Semester Credit Hours15
Spring Semester
FRE 201 French IV 3
Social Science Core (2 of 2) 3
CMP 125 Research Writing 3
HIS 151 World History Since 1500 3
Natural / Physical Science Core Course (1 of 2) 3
 Semester Credit Hours15
Year 2
Fall Semester
300 or 400 Level French Course (1 of 7) 3
LIT 250 Masterworks of Western Lit I 3
Select one of the following: 3
Chinese I  
German I  
Italian I  
Spanish I  
Fine Arts Core Course 3
Natural / Physical Science Core Course (2 of 2) 3
 Semester Credit Hours15
Spring Semester
300 or 400 Level French Course (2 of 7) 3
300 or 400 Level French Course (3 of 7) 3
Select one of the following: 3
Chinese II  
Italian II  
German II  
Spanish II  
LIT 251 Masterworks of Western Lit II 3
Select one of the following: 3
Any Philosophy (PHL) Core Course
 
Philosophy of Martin Luther King Jr.  
 Semester Credit Hours15
Year 3
Fall Semester
300 or 400 Level French Course (4 of 7) 3
Select one of the following: 3
Chinese III  
Italian III  
German III  
Spanish III  
FRE 305 An Intro to French Literature 3
Two Elective Courses 2 6
 Semester Credit Hours15
Spring Semester
300 or 400 Level French Course (5 of 7) 3
Select one of the following: 3
Chinese IV  
Italian IV  
German IV  
Spanish IV  
Three Elective Courses 2 9
 Semester Credit Hours15
Year 4
Fall Semester
300 or 400 Level French Course (6 of 7) 3
Four Elective Courses 2 12
 Semester Credit Hours15
Spring Semester
FRE 490 Independent Research and Study (7 of 7) 3
Four Elective Courses 2 12
 Semester Credit Hours15
 Total Credit Hours for Graduation120
1

For course placement information see http://www.rider.edu/offices-services/orientation/course-placement

2

Please note that elective credits may be used to complete requirements in a second major or minor.

Notes:

  • Foreign Language core requirements are included in the major. 
  • 24 Hours beyond French IV and 12 semester hours in collateral Liberal Arts courses.
  • Some of the requirements may be met by Study Abroad.  Students are strongly encouraged to spend at least one semester abroad.

Courses and Descriptions

FRE 100 French I 3 Credits

Conversational French is taught through basic vocabulary and grammar building. Students will enjoy an immersion-style method emphasizing real-life situations and vocabulary in authentic cultural context, through an interactive textbook, videos, on-line resources, and oral/aural skill building using the technology in the Foreign Language Media Center to enhance learning.

Prerequisite(s): Placement test if French has been studied elsewhere.

FRE 101 French II 3 Credits

Building on learning in French I, students will begin to converse using more complicated grammatical structures within immersion-style classroom interactions. While the focus is still on conversation and aural skill building, composition skills receive greater emphasis. Students will enjoy an interactive textbook, Internet usage, and authentic videos shot on location in France.

Prerequisite(s): FRE 100 or placement test.

FRE 200 French III 3 Credits

This course builds on linguistic skills previously acquired through an emphasis on conversation and oral comprehension, and through vocabulary building. Grammar study is continued at a more advanced level, and students begin to read short passages focusing mainly on francophone culture and civilization. Film clips, Internet resources, and other computer-aided learning tools are used to create a dynamic immersion-style learning experience.

Prerequisite(s): FRE 101 or placement test.

FRE 201 French IV 3 Credits

While continuing the emphasis on aural/oral production and grammar and vocabulary building, short passages of greater complexity taken from literary texts, newspapers, and magazines will become the focus of conversation/composition activities. Technological resources will continue to enhance the immersion-style learning experience consistent with a course in advanced French. Successful completion of this course, or its equivalent, serves as a prerequisite for French courses at the 300 and 400 level.

Prerequisite(s): FRE 200 or placement test.

FRE 300 French Composition/Translation 3 Credits

An in-depth study of style, shades of meaning, and correctness of expression. Translation of business/professional/scientific/political texts will receive emphasis, and students will continue to perfect their writing skills, and review and improve advanced grammatical structures.

Prerequisite(s): FRE 201, placement test at 300-level or above, or FRE 300 or above. Exceptions may be made for Study Abroad or native/heritage speakers with permission of chairperson.

FRE 301 French for Business 3 Credits

The fundamentals needed to survive in the French professional and business world are taught. Students will continue to perfect oral/written/aural skills while learning about the cultural climate within which these skills will be used. Students will learn how to prepare effective business/professional correspondence and, through role-playing activities, will use their knowledge in such real-life situations as interviewing, telephone conversations, and business meetings.

Prerequisite(s): FRE 201, placement test at 300- level or above, or FRE 300 or above. Exceptions may be made for Study Abroad or native/heritage speakers with permission of chairperson.

FRE 305 An Intro to French Literature 3 Credits

A chronological overview of the evolution of French literature from the chansons de geste into the 20th century. Study and interpretation of selected works, authors or literary movements through the Renaissance, the classical period, Enlightenment, romanticism, realism, naturalism to representative works by authors of our century from Proust to existentialism, the nouveau Roman, theatre absurde and beyond. Required for majors.

Prerequisite(s): FRE 201, placement test at 300-level or above, or FRE 300 or above. Exceptions may be made for Study Abroad or native/heritage speakers with permission of chairperson.

FRE 311 French Culture 3 Credits

A study of modern France and French value orientations as they are rooted in tradition and history and continue to shape everyday life as well as institutions, social organizations, artistic expression, education, attitudes and human interaction. A comparative approach will examine the underlying differences between France and the United States. Classes are in English.

FRE 320 French Phonetics and Conversation 3 Credits

This course is an introduction to French phonetics and is designed to help students further develop their skills in speaking French accurately and fluently. The course requires students to learn basic linguistic symbols and the phonetic alphabet as a theoretical step toward improving articulation and pronunciation. Moreover, special emphasis will be placed on the development of vocabulary and of appropriate communication techniques to participate in discussions in French. The course will be a mix of lectures, class discussions, debates, face-to-face conversations, and role games requiring a strong active participation. Counts toward major and minor requirements.

Prerequisite(s): FRE 201, placement test at 300-level or above, or FRE 300 or above. Exceptions may be made for Study Abroad or native/heritage speakers with permission of chairperson.

FRE 422 Cultural Expression in French Film and Television 3 Credits

A systematic analysis of selected French films and television broadcasts will reveal cultural value orientations as they relate to love, family, community, leisure, work, social, and political organization. A comparative approach will stress the underlying cultural differences between France and the United States.

Prerequisite(s): FRE 201, placement test at 300-level or above, or FRE 300 or above. Exceptions may be made for Study Abroad or native/heritage speakers with permission of chairperson.

FRE 425 Portrait of the Hero in French Fiction 3 Credits

This course deals with modern French fiction and its depiction of the role of the hero as a figure who gradually loses control over his fate (Stendhal, Balzac) and is changed into someone who struggles against ever increasing odds, only to be finally vanquished (Flaubert). The main character may find fulfillment in recollections of the past (Proust), explore the moral parameters of existence (Gide, Camus) or become the incapacitated anti-hero of Beckett’s novels.

Prerequisite(s): FRE 201, placement test at 300-level or above, or FRE 300 or above; exceptions may be made for Study Abroad or native/heritage speakers with permission of chairperson.

FRE 430 Mask & Reality in French Theat 3 Credits

A study of theater through the optic of a unifying theme: the mask and reality. The goal is to gain a greater appreciation of the art of dramatic illusion whereby actors, while wearing the masks of the characters they play, allow us to examine ourselves and reality in true, unmasked form. Playwrights to be studied will range from the classical theater of Racine and Corneille, through the modern avant-garde, existentialist and Theater of the Absurd works of such playwrights as Ionesco and Beckett.

Prerequisite(s): FRE 201, placement test at 300-level or above, or FRE 300 or above. Exceptions may be made for Study Abroad or native/heritage speakers with permission of chairperson.

FRE 435 Self in French Prose & Poetry 3 Credits

Are we determining or pre-determined creatures? What is our essential nature? Is the quest for salvation justified? A study of the historical, political, and social realities in which the texts were composed will shed light on the concept of the self. Representative authors from the Renaissance to modern times will include: Montaigne, Descartes, Pascal, Montesquieu, Rousseau, Hugo, Baudelaire, Apollinaire, Sartre, Camus, Duras, Sarraute, Colette, de Beauvoir.

Prerequisite(s): FRE 201, placement test at 300-level or above, or FRE 300 or above. Exceptions may be made for Study Abroad or native/heritage speakers with permission of chairperson.

FRE 440 A Quest for Identity: Francophone Lit 3 Credits

This course introduces the cultures of countries or regions where French is used either as the (or one of the) official language(s) or, in a less official capacity, by a segment of the population. In readings, discussions, songs, film viewings, and written assignments, students will experience the Francophone cultures of specific areas and the amazing diversity of the Francophone world. They will also explore the difficult relation of the Francophone countries with France. The course considers issues of social status, history, resistance, and identity. Counts toward major and minor requirements.

Prerequisite(s): FRE 201, placement test at 300-level or above, or FRE 300 or above. Exceptions may be made for Study Abroad or native/heritage speakers with permission of chairperson.

FRE 490 Independent Research and Study 1-4 Credits

Independent Research and Study allows juniors and seniors in good academic standing to investigate topics of interest under faculty supervision. Projects must be approved by the faculty member, department chairperson, and academic dean no later than the third week of the semester in which the project is to be conducted. Only one project can be scheduled in a semester, and for no more than four semester hours; up to 12 semester hours of independent research and study may be counted toward graduation. Note that individual departments may have additional restrictions.

FRE 491 Internshp in Foreign Languages 1-4 Credits

A supervised work experience in an approved organization to gain knowledge of the importance and interrelationship of foreign languages and cultures in the workplace. Placements can be made in international governmental agencies, international trade associations, multinational corporations, social service agencies, and other appropriate workplace environments both in the United States and abroad. With permission of the supervisor and faculty advisor, a three-credit internship may be substituted for a collateral requirement as credit toward the major.

Prerequisite(s): students should have completed at least one 300-level course in the foreign language.

FRE 496 Special Studies 3 Credits

Offered as needed to complement the program in French. A seminar open to a variety of topics treating a particular author, period, genre or critical approach.

Prerequisite(s): FRE 201, placement test at 300-level or above, or FRE 300 or above. Exceptions may be made for Study Abroad or native/heritage speakers with permission of chairperson.